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  • Dr. Karin Anderson Abrell

The Power is Yours


We gave our heart. We gave our #love. We gave ourselves.


We feel as if we lost our #power. But we didn’t lose it. We gave it away.


And sometimes, even after the relationship is over, we still give away our power.


When we obsess about him—we give away our power. 


When we wonder what we could have or should have done to keep him—we give away our power. 


When we start thinking, “Maybe something’s wrong with me. That’s why he left”—we give away our power.


But if we give something away, we can certainly take it back!


The power’s yours. Reclaim it!


But how? By taking control of what you CAN control.


You can’t control what he did or that he left or how it all went down.


But you can control how much you let it affect you.


Cognitive Therapy teaches us to be aware of our thoughts and recognize how they impact our feelings and behavior. This therapeutic modality underscores the influence of our mindset on our emotional state.


So taking control of our mindset is how we take back the power—because if I’m not thinking about him, he’s not affecting me. 


Simple as that. Simple, but not easy.


So throughout the day, check yourself. Are you giving away your power?


If you’re obsessing about him—distract yourself. Occupy your mind in a different direction. When I was going through one of my many horrible breakups, I ripped out the crossword puzzle from the paper every morning and carried it around with me in my purse. When I was on the bus or train and thoughts of my ex tried to take over my mind, I’d work on the crossword puzzle. It seems too simplistic to be effective but it actually helped quite a bit. I needed to distract my mind so it wouldn’t go into its “I miss Dylan” default mode and working on the crossword puzzle did just that.


If you’re wondering what you could have or should have done to keep him—stop the overanalyzing and replace it with this truth, “I made the best possible decisions with the information available to me at the time.” After breaking up with someone, I had the annoying tendency to rehash every tiny detail, wishing I’d done things differently—until I realized this truth. So when I caught myself going down that road, I’d tell myself, “Stop it, Karin. You made the best decisions you could! Give yourself a break!”


If you’re thinking something’s wrong with you and that’s why he left—forget that nonsense! There’s nothing wrong with you—you just haven’t met the right fit for you! Over my years of dating, I used to struggle thinking, “Ugh! What am I doing wrong all the time?” But using my cognitive therapy training helped here. I started replacing the, “What am I doing wrong?” thought with, “I’m not doing anything wrong—but it definitely would be wrong to give away my power by obsessing over a guy who chose to leave me!” Besides, we could flip the script by asking the question, “What’s wrong with him that he couldn’t handle your fabulousness!” 


Remember, you may have lost control but you CAN reclaim it. The power’s yours. 


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The first portion of this post originally appeared on Instagram in collaboration with The Fairy Godfather.

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